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Ashcroft Plant Cumbria make it a Sandvik machine double

Sandvik QJ341 jaw crusher

Company purchases new QJ341 jaw crusher and QE341 scalper to meet growing recycling operation

ESTABLISHED in 1994, Ashcroft Plant Cumbria Ltd have expanded into a profitable business and today the company has 110 employees, up to 50 subcontractors and a £10 million annual turnover. The firm specializes in groundworks, civil engineering and demolition projects across Cumbria, Northumberland, Lancashire and south-west Scotland.  

A key part of the business expansion has been the recycling segment of the company. Ashcroft developed their recycling facility two years ago and, initially, brought equipment in (through hire) to process recycled material. With the increasing need to supply usable aggregates for his own projects and for resale to other customers, company founder Chris Ashcroft decided to invest in his own mobile crushing and screening plant for his site in 2016.  


Having hired Sandvik equipment previously, Mr Ashcroft was already familiar with the range of equipment offered by the Swedish manufacturer. He contacted Sandvik and a demonstration of a Sandvik QJ341 jaw crusher and QE341 heavy-duty scalper took place earlier this year. 

Following the demonstration, Mr Ashcroft took no convincing that these mobile units were the right machines for the job and so he purchased them straight away. ‘Sandvik has the right products for our needs,’ he said. ‘The salesman was very knowledgeable, understood our requirements and put the right deal on the table.’

Purpose-built for recycling applications, the QE341 plant features a 1,200 x 750mm C12 single toggle jaw crusher, a hydraulically adjustable CSS (closed-side setting) regulation system and a user-friendly PLC control unit with colour screen for ease of operation. 

Fitted with a Caterpillar fixed speed engine, Sandvik say this ‘back to basics’ engine brings many additional customer advantages, including ease of use, more horsepower and requires no AdBlue or EGR. The QE341 also includes a reverse crush function which helps to relieve blockages and, when combined with the hydraulically lowered main conveyor, is a key benefit of the mobile crusher in recycling applications.

Complementing the Sandvik QJ341 unit is the QE341 scalper and whether it is working as primary a crusher or a standalone unit, the latter model is designed to deliver high production with clean separation.   

One of the key features of the plant is its ability to configure with reverse side conveyors or conveyors positioned on one side which, Sandvik say, is unique in the product category. This type of operation is of particularly benefit in tight confined spaces often found in recycling applications. 

Other attributes of the QE341 are the modular frame design of the screenbox and hydraulic jack-up screen facility, both of which allows quick and easy changeover of screen media. This reduces time and money for Ashcroft when they need to change the screen mesh over for processing different materials. 

The machine is currently fitted with a 25mm mesh at the top deck and 6 mm piano wire at the bottom deck for processing topsoil. The QE341 model is powered by a Cat C4.4 engine (84kW) and the unit comes with two-speed tracking, which helps to enhance mobility and reduce travel time between job sites. 

Ashcroft Plant Cumbria have been using the QJ341 and QE341 machines for six months and they have proven to be the ideal fit for the company’s recycling and demolition activities. The company has recently acquired a larger depot for their head office and looking ahead, Mr Ashcroft added that the Sandvik brand would definitely be in the running if they were to purchase another machine in the future. 


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